This past weekend I got a chance to dip my feet into the cool, fresh water of Medicine Lake and breathe the dank .air right in front of the house that I grew up in. A flood of memories came back to me, which was made all the more powerful as my childhood friend Trish drove up to greet me. Right after her, cousins pulled up, one by one. I hadn't seen some of them in 30-odd years.
Suddenly I felt as though I was 18 years old again, living on that lovely lake with its gently lapping waves that caressed the sandy beach. It was that tranquil sound too, that pulled me back to the past--when my family spent summers sailing, skiing and swimming on that lake. Medicine Lake was the center of all that was joyful in my childhood.
As everyone gathered to remember my father on the beach of that lake, I realized how lucky I was to live there. I had come home to Minnesota. The Midwestern twan in the voices of my extended family soothed me.
The day before, I drove along the Mississippi River in Red Wing and it made me think of the song my Grandma Bruch sang to me about an Indian Maiden looking for her lost warrior on a cliff overlooking the river at night--"When the moon shines tonight on pretty Red Wing, the moon is beaming, the maiden's weeping."
I may live in Florida, New York City, Connecticut and any other place on this earth, but Minnesota will always be home. You can take the girl out of Minnesota, but you can NEVER take the Minnesota out of the girl.